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Local News

Petition drive halts certificate of obligation vote

todayAugust 24, 2021

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The City of Kerrville’s plans to issue approximately $7 million in certificates of obligation (CO’s) to begin funding a new public safety facility in Kerrville without raising the property tax rate has been halted after a group of area citizens filed a petition last week requesting that the upcoming city council vote on the issuance be curtailed in favor of a future bond election. The petition protests the city’s issuance of the CO’s, which means that the city needs voter approval for any issuance for this purpose.

The petition, which was presented to the city secretary’s office at 9:55 a.m. on August 17,2021, included 1,219 signatures. Of those, 1,073 were certified by the city secretary as eligible voters, while 96 signatures were marked with discrepancies (not registered voters or petition not dated) and 50 signatures had been crossed through prior to delivery to the city secretary’s office.

By law, the city secretary’s office had to review the petition to ensure that the signatures were eligible voting residents of Kerrville. Based on the city’s current roll of 16,486 registered voters, the petition needed 825 registered voter signatures, or 5 percent of the 16,486 registered voters, to halt a city council vote on the CO issuance.

The petition states: “Whereas the undersigned qualified voters believe debt issued without explicit voter approval, in the form of Certificates of Obligation, shall be reserved for funding unforeseen emergencies, therefor the undersigned qualified voters of the City of Kerrville, Texas, being at least five percent of the qualified voters of the issuer, protest the issuance of the Combination Tax and Revenue Certificates of Obligation as proposed by Kerrville City Council in Resolution 29-2021 and request that an election on such issuance be ordered, held, and conducted in the manner provided for bond elections under Chapter 1251, Texas Government Code.”

As the city received the petition after the statutory deadline for a General Obligation Bond election to be placed on the November 2021 ballot, council will eventually need to decide when such an election will occur, with the earliest available date being May 2022. State law does not provide an option for a special-called election for this topic.


Written by: Michelle Layton

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